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Old 01-08-2011, 08:49 PM   #16
stopher1

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we will be there the last week of sept and the first week of october.


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Originally Posted by FreezinRafiki View Post
I'm here, Stopher! I'm so far behind on everyone's trip reports it just isn't funny. I see you posted an update to your Daddy/Daughter adventure - and if work and life ever slow down just a bit I'll actually be able to read it.


Now this sounds familiar, but I can't quite place from where...

And if you're insane enough to have 3 or 4 or 5 TRs going at once, I'm insane enough to read them!
I think I just am that insane Barry... now to just see if I can actually accomplish it. Birthdays and other celebrations this weekend have gotten in the way... hopefully tomorrow I can have something for this one and the other one in the way of an update.

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Fellow former DLR Castmember checking in. Adventureland-Frontierland Attractions 1988-1991!

Can't wait to read more. I am lucky to live an hour from DLR, but have been known to schedule client visits in Central Florida with a DVC stay included! Great minds think alike.
Welcome! Glad to have you here. Which attractions were your favorites to work while you were there? And which weren't?
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Old 01-09-2011, 03:29 PM   #17
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Welcome! Glad to have you here. Which attractions were your favorites to work while you were there? And which weren't?
My favorite, Mark Twain, it was relaxing and laid back. Least favorite, Jungle Cruise, always on for 8 hours was exhausting. I also liked Tiki Room. Air-conditioned and you could catch a few zzz's during the show ( I was a lazy college kid).
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Old 01-09-2011, 03:42 PM   #18
stopher1

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My favorite, Mark Twain, it was relaxing and laid back. Least favorite, Jungle Cruise, always on for 8 hours was exhausting. I also liked Tiki Room. Air-conditioned and you could catch a few zzz's during the show ( I was a lazy college kid).
That's cool. I love the Mark Twain, and got to pilot it once myself, though that wasn't while working there. That was pretty cool. Oh yeah - and I love going in to the Tiki Room to this day... though I do like the show too - but the a/c is terrific. And taking a Dole Whip in with me makes it quite nice as well.
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SOLO Adventures: WDW Jun '10 / Triple Whammy WDW Family Trip-Jan'10 / SOLO Adventures: DL Nov/Dec'09 / Father/Sons Adventure May'09
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DISNEYLAND: Way too many to possibly count! I grew up 30 mins. from DL. Former CM. AP holder for 20 yrs. Premier Pass AP. All 3 DL Resorts and numerous off-site hotels.
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Old 01-09-2011, 09:46 PM   #19
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Wow Stopher, Three trips in two TRs at the same time?

Then knowing that you work, travel, have three kids, I have one question... Do you SLEEP???

I can't seem to keep up just reading and you're writing two TRs and posting other stuff as well.
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Old 01-09-2011, 11:09 PM   #20
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subbing in even though I can't keep up with all the TRs that I'm in on!
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Old 01-10-2011, 10:10 PM   #21
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I'll Take a Lamplighter, a Coke and a Hot Fudge Sundae Please…

Part II: “I'll Take a Lamplighter, a Coke and a Hot Fudge Sundae Please…”

So checking in to my room early was a good thing, except for the poor park view, but hey the room was literally moments from both parks, so I wasn’t complaining. It was only about 2 pm, and I wasn’t supposed to be over to my friends’ house for the Carnation Plaza Gardens reunion til 4 – so I had a little time to kill. I wandered the grounds and lobby, and got a couple of pics.

Looking straight out - then DOWN from my balcony






Outside near the pool, on the "wedding lawn", looking back at the DVC villas





The outdoor fireplace, near the same spot as above




The lobby Christmas Tree






Outside near the Porte Cachere - the "approach", and then nearby






Then started to head out to DTD. I knew that I didn’t want to actually enter a park, because then I would be tempted to ride something and might be late… but hey, I was right there… and DCA is right there… and Soarin’ is right there too… and DCA has a SINGLE RIDER LINE. Easy choice! Within 5 minutes I was inside the park and approaching the FP Return / Single Rider CM. I asked for my SR Card, and was waiting my turn within just a couple of minutes more. Soon enough (about 3 minutes later), the CM was calling to me, and assigning me to my row for immediate boarding. SCORE! Entering the queue to fastening my seat belt in about 6 minutes – when the Standby queue was hovering at about 60 minutes. There’s just something wonderful about going SOLO.

Upon exiting the ride, I decided it would be best not to tempt myself further, and made my way back in to the Grand through the hotel entrance, and then out in to DTD. I wandered a little bit, and quite uncharacteristically… did not take any pictures. I worked my way down towards the AMC Theatre and hung a left to walk down the path towards the hotel self-parking lot, and then left on my way to find a dessert to take to the party. Marie Callender’s was calling to me – another favorite from all the years of living in So. Cal. A couple of her yummy pies would be a nice addition to the evening’s fare.
I quickly entered the address in to the GPS on my phone, and was off. I knew the general direction of where I was headed, but my friends had moved since the last time I was at there house… 9 years ago! Thankfully it wasn’t far from where they had lived previously.

Now to backtrack a bit… this party was originally going to just be dinner between another former CM friend, Nancy, who lives in Minnesota, but goes home each year for Thanksgiving to visit her parents. We had chatted on FB for a few weeks about possibly getting together since we were both going to be in the area at the same time. And then it started to grow from there, as we each talked about who we might like to see while there and such. Last Fall while there I had opened up the possibility of a get together to several others (sadly missing Nancy’s dates by only a matter of days). About 7 of us were going to get together then… but sadly I got violently ill the night before we were supposed to meet. I felt it best to tell them all and let them make their own decision about whether or not they wanted to be around someone who had revisited dinner multiple times during the middle of the night. Most of the ones who were going to be there decided against it, but thankfully my friend Patty was very stubborn and threw caution to the wind, not really giving a care, figuring I’d flown all that way and “why not?” So she came over to the hotel and we had a nice visit. Plus I got to meet here adorable daughter.

So here we are back again this year, and now Nancy and I were set to see about 12-15 people, give or take some. A FB Event page was set up, and over the course of the time, our friends Dan & Connie opened up their home to be the gathering place, instead of in a restaurant as Nancy & I had been planning. Soon we started to see people announcing their intention to come, or their regrets for having to miss it. Several remained “Maybe’s” all through the process, so it really was a guessing game as to who actually would or would not show up. In the end we had a blast. It was great to reconnect in person with them all. Several of these folks I hadn’t seen in 20 years. Others I’ve been in contact with for the duration. Several of us attended each others’ weddings, and have watched our kids grow through regular communication, Christmas cards, and definitely Facebook. Not to bore you completely, but here are just a few fun shots from the evening.
Here Dan, a former fry cook there at CPG fires up the grill once more – flipping burgers for his guests once again.




Here, several of the gang reminisce and look at old photos and scrapbooks from our days together as we … as the “Traditions” handbook from the Disney University training always said… “we work while others play”.




Back in those days I worked the "front lines" - the cash registers selling "Lamplighter" (cheeseburger), "Great American" (double cheeseburgers) and other similarly named combo meals (CPG WAS technically part of Main Street, U.S.A., even though we were under the umbrella of "Fantasyland Foods"); I also scooped ice cream, or made "set-ups" (getting the buns sauced, and ready with lettuce & tomato); made the fries (VERY greasy - but MUCH WORSE when you closed and had to clean those greasy overhead screens); and yes, I was a fry cook too - flipping burgers. It was a fun but crazy time in my life.



Here it is and I am ... back in the day





And now... a sad shell of it's former "glory".




CPG was closed officially in 2000, and the restaurant part was torn down thereafter. Where it stood is now just an overflow patio from the neighborhing Rancho del Zocalo restaurant in Frontierland. The red & beige striped umbrellas in the back of this shot are where the restaurant once stood. The band / dance floor is still there... oh to be back in the day hearing that wonderful Big Band music once again and watching all of the old couples come out to dance. In it's heyday, CPG was host to many, many wonderful Swing and Big Band bands - both real big names, and a lot of pretenders too. Now it's pretty much just home to the Magic Music Days program with the high school kids. Not quite the same in my mind!



Here I am with some of my friends












Being a native Californian, I do have a lot of different family and friends living there still. Each visit I make, I try to see someone – or several someones. This trip had two such events that night alone. Sadly, my camera battery had died before I got to my next gathering, and I wasn’t able to document my get together with some old friends from Jr. High School. We had agreed to meet at 9, so I had to cut my time with the CPG folks short. I was very bummed to leave – but honestly can’t wait to get out there again and spend some more time with them in 2011.

I left the party with a happy heart, and headed back to the Grand. My other friends had agreed to meet me there, and so we enjoyed some time together in the Hearthstone Lounge. It really is a very nice bar area. We laughed, we reminisced, we had fun again like it was 1984. Then it was time for them to go, but I quickly let them come up to see what the room was like. (Being a good DVC member, I’m always on the lookout for possibilities to share my love for Disney, and the awesome accommodations with others who don’t necessarily “get” the DVC program. One already said he might be contacting DVC soon himself… now wouldn’t that be nice? )

My friends left, and I decided it was time to hit the sheets. It was approaching midnight, and I was going to be in the parks the next day. So with that same mentality – I will bid adieu for now, but will be back with more soon…
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SOLO Adventures: WDW Jun '10 / Triple Whammy WDW Family Trip-Jan'10 / SOLO Adventures: DL Nov/Dec'09 / Father/Sons Adventure May'09
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DISNEYLAND: Way too many to possibly count! I grew up 30 mins. from DL. Former CM. AP holder for 20 yrs. Premier Pass AP. All 3 DL Resorts and numerous off-site hotels.
WDW: 58 trips on & off-site, including DVC, Deluxe, Moderate & Value - in 18 different WDW resorts & numerous off-site resorts. AP holder for 5 yrs. Premier Pass AP holder.
AULANI: 1 so far. More to come though, & definitely looking forward to returning!
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Old 01-10-2011, 10:26 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by stopher1 View Post
Part II: “I'll Take a Lamplighter, a Coke and a Hot Fudge Sundae Please…”

The band / dance floor is still there... oh to be back in the day hearing that wonderful Big Band music once again and watching all of the old couples come out to dance. In it's heyday, CPG was host to many, many wonderful Swing and Big Band bands - both real big names, and a lot of pretenders too. Now it's pretty much just home to the Magic Music Days program with the high school kids. Not quite the same in my mind!
Now, wait a minute, my friend...do you mean to tell me that my DH and I are teleported to yesteryear every Saturday night when we go to DL to listen to the swing bands. I mean those old couples are still out there, maybe we are being teleported back in time. But I mean to tell you the bands are still there Saturday nights. And I'm pretty sure a few of those old couples were dancing when you were last there Saturday nights = Swing band night = date night for us. But don't count on seeing us old fogies out there My DH does a mean toe tap and I'm usually dancing with my grand daughter or swaying if she's with us.
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Old 01-10-2011, 10:29 PM   #23
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Wow! Thanks for sharing those old photos, I remember when it was a hopping restaurant destination. Sadly our community band is one of those groups that graces the stage for the Community Arts Showcase, but without the restaurant to draw people, it's hardly the destination it used to be.

Glad you had fun with your old friends!
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Old 01-11-2011, 06:37 AM   #24
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Now, wait a minute, my friend...do you mean to tell me that my DH and I are teleported to yesteryear every Saturday night when we go to DL to listen to the swing bands. I mean those old couples are still out there, maybe we are being teleported back in time. But I mean to tell you the bands are still there Saturday nights. And I'm pretty sure a few of those old couples were dancing when you were last there Saturday nights = Swing band night = date night for us. But don't count on seeing us old fogies out there My DH does a mean toe tap and I'm usually dancing with my grand daughter or swaying if she's with us.
That's wonderful to hear. I haven't experienced it in a while, and the few Saturdays I've been there over the past few years there has been nothing going on there...I mean nothing... a completely empty stage, nobody around except people trying to stake a spot to watch the fireworks...so my bad for making a generalization. I'm happy to hear it is still swinging there.
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DISNEYLAND: Way too many to possibly count! I grew up 30 mins. from DL. Former CM. AP holder for 20 yrs. Premier Pass AP. All 3 DL Resorts and numerous off-site hotels.
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Old 01-11-2011, 08:21 AM   #25
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great update stopher!! love the old pics and its great how you guys still get together. (burgers look good too!)
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Old 01-11-2011, 09:55 AM   #26
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Made it in time to read 2 installments! I am sooo slacking here. As always, your TR has started off beautifully! Looks like you had a lot of fun reminiscing with your friends. Looking forward to future updates
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Old 01-11-2011, 11:20 AM   #27
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Thanks for sharing . . .
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Old 01-11-2011, 11:54 AM   #28
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Wow...what memories...CPG, Lamplighter combo, the big band playing at night. Takes me right back to those fun summers. Scooping ice cream...if the vanilla was rock hard you knew you were in for a bad day, and what was in that Fantasia ice cream anyhow? I think I recoginize a couple of people in your staff picture taken back in the day - the guy on the top left, the guy in the middle in the tie, and is the guy on the right named Ken? I have only kept in touch with one person from my DL days, but what a great experience I had working there! That is so fantastic that you have kept in touch with so many!
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Old 01-11-2011, 06:31 PM   #29
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Wonderful that you make it a priority to get together with old friends. You give new meaning to the phrase "so much to do, so little time."
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Old 01-13-2011, 07:52 AM   #30
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great update stopher!! love the old pics and its great how you guys still get together. (burgers look good too!)


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Made it in time to read 2 installments! I am sooo slacking here. As always, your TR has started off beautifully! Looks like you had a lot of fun reminiscing with your friends. Looking forward to future updates
Welcome Don! Glad to see you here.


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Thanks for sharing . . .
Welcome Rich! I'm happy to do so.

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Wow...what memories...CPG, Lamplighter combo, the big band playing at night. Takes me right back to those fun summers. Scooping ice cream...if the vanilla was rock hard you knew you were in for a bad day, and what was in that Fantasia ice cream anyhow? I think I recoginize a couple of people in your staff picture taken back in the day - the guy on the top left, the guy in the middle in the tie, and is the guy on the right named Ken? I have only kept in touch with one person from my DL days, but what a great experience I had working there! That is so fantastic that you have kept in touch with so many!
Oh yeah, the memories are thick. CPG was awesome, but just being a part of it all was such fun, even when CPG went down for a rehab and I was sent off into the wilds of NOS/FRL, or to other FL locations like Village Haus or Yumz. I loved working at the BT Ranch too. Only did it a few times, but it was neat. About the picture, I remember most of the people in that shot, but unfortunately the guy with the bow tie... I have no clue who he is.

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Wonderful that you make it a priority to get together with old friends. You give new meaning to the phrase "so much to do, so little time."
Thanks Di. Yes, every trip I make west I try to see at least one someone or pair of someones from days gone by outside of family, though it's usually more than that. Friends are another one of the spices of life!
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SOLO Adventures: WDW Jun '10 / Triple Whammy WDW Family Trip-Jan'10 / SOLO Adventures: DL Nov/Dec'09 / Father/Sons Adventure May'09
My 13,000th Post My 12,000th Post My 10,000th Post

DISNEYLAND: Way too many to possibly count! I grew up 30 mins. from DL. Former CM. AP holder for 20 yrs. Premier Pass AP. All 3 DL Resorts and numerous off-site hotels.
WDW: 58 trips on & off-site, including DVC, Deluxe, Moderate & Value - in 18 different WDW resorts & numerous off-site resorts. AP holder for 5 yrs. Premier Pass AP holder.
AULANI: 1 so far. More to come though, & definitely looking forward to returning!
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